Woman Buying Holiday Via Merchant Services

Why Do Travel Businesses Struggle To Get Merchant Services?

Is It Normal For a Travel Business To Struggle With Acquiring Merchant Services?

Protected Trust Services (PTS) are often approached by start ups and trading travel businesses who require support with merchant services and card acquiring. If you have tried to get merchant services and have been turned down, rest assured that this is very normal in the travel sector. Many start ups will set up a business bank account and put their beautiful new website live, only to have their application for merchant services rejected. Unfortunately, businesses in travel cannot approach card acquiring as just another tick on their to-do list, and  gaining merchant services can often be the hardest part of setting up a travel company. If you have been declined by your bank, or a plethora of merchant providers, there is no need to panic. This is completely normal in today’s card acquiring market.

Why Merchant Providers Are Cautious In Travel

The reason many merchant providers decline travel businesses is because the travel industry is considered high risk to most financial institutions. To put this into context, travel is in the same category as diet companies with money back guarantees, or adult entertainment companies.

When a purchase of over £100 is made by credit card, the merchant provider is required by law to guarantee that payment. If the consumer felt there was any area within the package that was not fulfilled – such as the quality of a hotel or incorrect flight details – they can make a charge back on the card payment. The card provider is first in line for this refund. Unfortunately, consumers are more likely to dispute and charge back travel agency transactions than most others. Furthermore, if a travel agency or tour operator were to collapse, the merchant providers can be liable for refunding any affected clients.

A Trust Account Can Help You To Acquire Merchant Services

Merchant providers are understandably risk averse, and as such, they have a tendency to forego working with industries which they see as a potential avenue for loss making. But by mitigating the risk to the merchant provider, you can thereby improve your chances of working with them. By using a trust account to protect the client monies, the merchant provider has the added assurance that the client’s money is protected and remains available to be claimed back, should a problem arise. Furthermore, if consumer monies are held in a trust account, the client money remains safe if a travel company were to collapse or choose to close.

How Can Protected Trust Services Help You?

The most obvious way that we help our members is by providing a trust account to help mitigate the risk to the merchant provider, but we do more than just that. Many travel trust solutions will ask their members to acquire their own merchant services, despite it being the area that applicants usually require the most support. Rest assured that Protected Trust Services are always happy to support our members through their applications, including applying on your behalf. Our risk and compliance team process a number of applications every day, so we fully understand exactly what each merchant provider will require and precisely why they require it. This allows us to fully support both our members and the merchant providers through each and every application, and we are proud to say that we have a 98% success rate in gaining merchant facilities. We also work directly with merchant service providers, including both Opayo and Global Payments, so we have a direct line to their teams to discuss and aid your application.

This is a completely complimentary service for all PTS members and is invaluable for most tour operators and travel agents. For more information on how we can help you, please visit our merchant services page. Alternatively, please feel free to contact us directly via ask ask@protectedtrustservices.com, or via telephone on 0207 190 9988. We look forward to hearing from you.